Society of American Archivists decides remove its own listserv archive

I’m back in the US, almost back in Vermont. Got this little bizarre piece of news today: Society of American Archivists decides to nuke its listserv archives. Huh.

5 Responses to “Society of American Archivists decides remove its own listserv archive”

  1. mark matienzo Says:

    When this came across the listserv I was pretty stunned. I haven’t yet built up the momentum to write up my own blog post, but I did post a response on the listserv.

  2. » Blog Archive » Throwing Out the Baby, the Bathwater, and the Bathtub: The Sad State of the Archives and Archivists Listserv Says:

    [...] In all, I find this to be an embarrassment to the profession. How are we to be trusted with retaining the memory of society if we can’t even retain our own? I certainly hope there are some enterprising archivists out there that are willing to step up to the plate to find a way to store this data before it gets thrown out all together. Do we have to prove SAA Council wrong, or go against their wishes just to prove a point? In some ways I hope not, but if we must, we should. This is finally getting some good coverage thanks to and Boing Boing posting links to Rick Prelinger’s post. I certainly it gets more since this appears to be such an egregious violation of the profession’s goals and the trust of the SAA members. [...]

  3. sarah Says:

    I’m worried that the mention of legal liability will cause an avalanche of all professional organizations taking this route. I use AUTOCAT and ARLIS-L archives on an almost daily basis. To zap the collective memory, especially of information professionals, is completely nonsensical to me.

  4. Rob Sieczkiewicz Says:

    I’m very disappointed. It’s ironic that SAA claims its mission is “to serve the educational and informational needs of more than 4,600 individual and institutional members,” yet so cavalierly tosses aside this valuable resource without consulting its membership first. When I was a young archivist, fresh out of grad school, the A&A list was more useful to me than anything that SAA offered. In fact, I’m not sure what SAA does, other than plan a fine annual meeting and occasionally publish a decent journal, to serve my “educational and informational needs” these days. It’s a question I’ll ask myself when I receive that SAA dues bill next year.

  5. joe Says:

    While it seems odd that archivists are getting rid of their archives, I think it speaks to their understanding that listserves are for transmitting information, and not for storage, etc.
    For information that needs to be preserved for long-term educational use, I don’t think that email is the right medium.